a mound of gold close-up

Government opens two new gold-fossicking areas near Clermont

Visitors to Clermont will be able to search for gold in new areas of Blair Athol State Forest, now that the Palaszczuk Government has opened two new fossicking areas in time for Easter.

Minister for Environment Leeanne Enoch said the new fossicking areas about 22 kilometres north-west of Clermont would open from tomorrow (March 30).

“We expect the new areas will attract visitors to the region, especially in the cooler months, bringing economic and social benefits to the community,” Ms Enoch said.

“Queensland Parks and Wildlife Service is supportive of fossicking and has worked with the Department of Natural Resources, Mines and Energy to obtain consent from all interested leaseholders, to declare and provide access to these new areas.

“Clermont is a popular area for gold fossickers and this will open up new areas to explore.

“The discovery of alluvial gold in gullies south of Clermont in 1861 triggered one of Queensland’s major gold rushes and today the area attracts interest from fossickers and metal detector enthusiasts.”

Ms Enoch said the Clermont Community and Business Group, Isaac Regional Council, and fossicking and prospecting representatives had requested more areas to be made available for fossicking.

“We had comments from locals and prospectors that some current fossicking areas on private and public land were being overworked, so it is wonderful we now have two new areas in Blair Athol State Forest.”

Ms Enoch said the Central Gold District (based around Clermont) now had 10 fossicking areas, including seven on State forests..

“It’s also worth remembering that a fossicking licence is required for this activity,” Ms Enoch said.

A month-long licence costs just $11.55 for a family, or $8 for an individual. Information on fossicking around Clermont, including maps and safety advice, is at https://www.qld.gov.au/recreation/activities/fossicking/central-gold

More information about fossicking in Queensland is at https://www.qld.gov.au/recreation/activities/fossicking

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